Tiziana Cantone took her life this week after a revenge porn sex tape leak led to months of brutal harassment, and now police in Italy are moving closer to finding the person responsible for the explicit video hitting the internet.
The video was released in the spring of 2015, allegedly showing Cantone in a racy scene with an unidentified man. The tape went viral, leading many people to create mocking memes and even move the harassment into real life. Cantone was allegedly confronted on the street by people who recognized her, leading the 31-year-old Naples woman to go into hiding and even file documents to have her name legally changed.
Police in Italy have vowed to find the source of the leak, and the Independent reported this week that they are moving in on potential suspects.
The video was widely reported on by Italian media, with spoofs of the video being made by famous soccer players. The sex tape became so widely known that Cantone had to quit her job and change her name.
Prosecutors in her home city of Naples have opened an investigation into her death, leaving open the possibility of criminal charges being filed.
Her friend, Teresa Petrosino, told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera that Catone had wanted to “leave everything behind” after being “destroyed” by the abuse, reports the Daily Mail.
She added: “I wonder how anyone can be so fierce, how to rage against a girl who has not done anything wrong. I think that they should be ashamed of all those who have filled the web of insults and meanwhile secretly watched the images.”
Revenge porn has become so mainstream that Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier of California introduced a bill against it, according to nonprofit advocacy organization Cyber Civil Rights Initiative.
Police have not yet said what charges will be filed in the Tiziana Cantone sex tape leak once a suspect is identified.